Political Science: The State of the Discipline II

Political Science: The State of the Discipline II

Political Science: The State of the Discipline II

Political Science: The State of the Discipline II

Excerpt

This project has its origin in the Spring of 1981, shortly after Seymour Martin Lipset, then president of the American Political Science Association, asked me to be program chair for the 1982 Annual Meeting. In undertaking that job, I made a fateful decision -- that it might be interesting and useful to encourage a substantial number of political scientists to turn their attention to one particular issue by having a "theme" for the meeting. The theme I chose was "The State of the Discipline." The idea was well received; interest in serious evaluation of research and knowledge in the discipline was very high, and President Lipset and Thomas Mann, then executive director of the Association, asked me to collect the theme papers that had been presented at the meeting into what became the first edition of this book. This second edition retains the same overall goal of reviewing important recent research in various subfields of political science. All of us connected with the project share the hope that this edition will be as useful as was the first for students, teachers, researchers, and others who are interested in the cumulation of knowledge in our discipline.

In the years since the first edition was published, we were pleased to learn that teachers throughout the profession used that volume in a variety of different courses, and that many researchers were using it to get an overview of both their own and other areas of research. About two years ago, therefore, the current executive director, Catherine Rudder, and deputy director Robert J-P. Hauck, thought it must surely be time to do an update. This edition, however, did not begin as a series of papers for an annual meeting but, rather, "from scratch." To provide the opportunity for different perspectives on research to be expressed, we assembled a new set of chapter authors. In addition, these authors were asked to provide a perspective on the research literature that was as international and comparative as their . . .

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